Easy Cut-Out Sugar Cookies with Icing Recipe

Easy Cut-Out Sugar Cookies with Icing Recipe

For the sugar cookies:

In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until well-combined and smooth, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, vanilla and almond extract, if using, and beat until combined. On low speed, slowly add in the flour, baking powder and salt, and beat until incorporated.

Divide the dough into 2 equal portions. Place one dough portion between 2 sheets of parchment and roll out to 1/4-inch thick. Repeat with the remaining portion of dough. Place the 2 sheets of dough on a baking sheet and chill for at least 1 hour or up to 1 day.

While the dough chills, preheat the oven to 350 F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

Remove the dough from the fridge and cut into shapes with a cookie cutter, re-rolling any scraps and cutting more shapes. Transfer the shapes to the prepared baking sheets. If the dough is too warm, freeze for 15 minutes or until firm.

Bake for 10 minutes, or until the cookies are set and begin to brown. Let the cookies cool for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely. Baked sugar cookies can be frozen in an airtight container for up to one month before icing.

For the border icing:

In a small bowl, add the powdered sugar, pure vanilla extract and water or milk and whisk to combine. Add the food coloring, if using, a few drops at a time, until colored to your liking. The mixture should be very thick but still pourable. Add more powdered sugar as needed.

Transfer the border icing to a squeeze bottle using a funnel. You can also scoop into a pastry bag fitted with a small plain tip. Before icing any cookies, practice on a piece of parchment paper to get the feel of the icing.

Holding the bottle or bag tip directly over one cookie, begin tracing an outline of the cookie, squeezing gently and using both hands, if needed, to maintain consistent pressure. Allow the icing to dry slightly before continuing with the flood icing.

For the flood icing:

In a small bowl, add the powdered sugar, pure vanilla extract and water or milk and whisk to combine. Add the food coloring, if using, a few drops at a time, until colored to your liking. The mixture should still be pretty thick, but will drizzle more freely than the border icing. If needed, add additional water or milk to loosen until the consistency is pourable. Pour the flood icing into a squeeze bottle or into a pastry bag fitted with a small plain tip.

Prepare as many batches and colors of flood icing as you need to decorate your cookies.

Begin filling the interior of the border drawn on each cookie with the flood icing, being careful not to add too much that it overflows the border icing. Use either the nose of the bottle or a small toothpick to push the icing evenly over the cookie and up against the corners.

Place the iced cookie on a cooling rack to dry for 24 hours. The cookies are dry when the surface is completely smooth, dry and resists smudging when touched. Store the finished cookies between sheets of parchment paper in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 10 days.

This content was originally published here.

How to Be Productive at Work in 2023

How to Be Productive at Work in 2023

It’s no secret that working a full 9-5 schedule isn’t conducive to productivity or happiness. To get the most out of your workday, it’s essential to have strategies that allow you to accomplish your goals.

This blog post will look at some easy ways to be productive at work in 2023. Keep reading to learn more!

Tips for setting goals and staying motivated at work in 2023

Setting goals can be a great way to set yourself up for success at work. Here are some tips for creating and sticking to goals at work in 2023: 

Be specific about your target. For example, instead of setting vague goals like “get more done” or “work more efficiently,” set clear targets, like “work 40 hours per week on the Friday after Thanksgiving” or “finish X number of tasks before the end of the day on Friday.” 

Set recurring goals. Instead of developing a new plan monthly, prioritize periodic goals, like “finish X number of tasks before the end of the day on Friday” or “read 20 pages of a new book each week.” 

Set realistic goals. When setting goals, it’s essential to be accurate — especially when setting goals related to time, like “finish X number of tasks before the end of the day on Friday.” Knowing how much time you have left at work each day can help you stay focused throughout the day. 

Set goals that you know you can achieve. Setting goals you know you can achieve will help you stay motivated at work. For example, if you know that you always work better when you have a deadline, set a goal to meet a deadline. 

Set rewards for achieving goals. Once you’ve set your goals, set tips for achieving them. For example, reward yourself with 20 minutes of extra sleep or a relaxing 10-minute break after you finish your plan.

4 Important Ways to be Productive in 2023

 Do you need to catch up? Does your office seem like a never-ending slog? If you’re in the majority, you’re not alone.

According to a study by the National Sleep Foundation, 80% of Americans feel like they don’t have enough time in the day to do everything they want.

To help you feel more productive and organized at work, we’ve put together a few tips to help you be more efficient. Check them out below!

1. Set a schedule and stick to it.

Making a schedule and sticking to it will help you accomplish more daily. When you know what you’re working on and when you expect to finish it, it’ll be much easier to focus on the task at hand.

2. Use your whiteboard or computer screen as a to-do list.

Trying to remember everything you need to do every day is impossible, which is why using a whiteboard or computer screen as your to-do list is so helpful. Not only can you see all of your tasks at once, but you can also add reminders as needed.

3. Use technology to your advantage.

If you like to be hands-on, using technology to your advantage can help you stay productive. For example, using a calendar to track your commitments can help you stay on top of your schedule. Additionally, using apps that keep track of your deadlines can be a huge help.

4. Take breaks.

When you’re feeling overwhelmed, taking a break is the best way to clear your head and get back to work with a fresh perspective. Instead of trying to cram in more work, take

How to create a work schedule that works for you?

Creating a work schedule that works for you is one of the most important things you can do to reduce stress. 

  • First, determine your most productive hours. 
  • Next, decide when you’ll be most effective — and when you’ll be at your best. 
  • Finally, schedule specific tasks for when you are at your best.
  • If a job requires your full attention, assign it a particular time block. 
  • Give yourself a 30-minute lunch break. 
  • Turn off your phone during your working hours. 
  • Schedule any personal errands or meetings late afternoon or early evening.

How to deal with distractions at work?


Distractions at work are the bane of any worker’s existence. But, unfortunately, they are also widespread. The American Institute of Stress reports that 55% of Americans feel stressed at work. 
With so much stress, it’s understandable that workers might want to take a break, but distractions also make it difficult to focus and concentrate. 

The good news is that many tactics can help you focus when you work in an office, and these tips will help you stay productive even when there are distractions around you.


1. Create a work plan before you begin

Before you get started on your work plan, you first need to take some time to think about what you want to achieve. Once you understand what you want, creating a work plan to help you reach your goals will be easier.

A work plan should include a timeline, goals, and objectives. The timeline should outline when you expect to complete each step, and the goals should be specific. Objectives should be measurable and achievable, and they should be updated as you progress through the plan.
Creating a work plan is essential in setting goals and achieving success.
2. Avoid multitasking
When we work on multiple tasks simultaneously, our brains struggle, and our performance declines. For example, when we try to do two jobs at once, our brain can only focus on one task at a time. When we try to do more than two tasks at once, our brain can’t handle the additional demands, and we struggle to complete the task.
The key to avoiding multitasking is to break the tasks down into simpler, more manageable pieces. When we break a job down, we can focus on it better and complete it faster. This is why we must set boundaries for ourselves and stick to them. If we can stick to our limits, we can avoid the adverse effects of multitasking and improve our productivity.


3. Diffuse organic oils

Diffuse organic oils have been found to affect cognitive function positively. Diffuse organic oils are derived from plants and then distilled to extract the oil. The oils are then mixed with carrier oil and diffused into the air.

There is research that suggests that diffusing oils can improve focus and concentration. The oils help improve blood flow to the brain and improve nerve function. They also help to improve mood and relieve tension and stress.


Here’s the blend you can try to promote focus while working:
3 drops Bergamot Essential Oil

3 drops Rosemary Essential Oil

2 drops Peppermint Essential Oil

1 drop Cedarwood Atlast Essential Oil
Directions: Add essential oils to the diffuser, following the manufacturer’s instructions.
4. Set time limits on your goals

To achieve your work goals, you need to set time limits. This way, you won’t be overwhelmed, and you’ll be able to focus on the task. You can also use time limits to monitor your progress. Finally, you can adjust your limits accordingly if you need to meet your goals.

5. Set yourself a shorter time frame to work

If you have a lot of unfinished work, or if you have a lot of unfinished tasks that you know you can get done in a shorter amount of time, setting yourself a shorter time frame to work on those tasks can be helpful. This will help you focus on the tasks you know you can get done in a shorter amount of time, and it will help keep you from getting overwhelmed by the amount of work you have to get done.

6. Turn off notifications

When working, we often want to concentrate on our work without being disturbed by incoming notifications. However, sometimes messages are necessary for our work. It can be challenging to ignore reports if we’re trying to focus on a task.

There are a few ways to work around this problem. One way is to turn off notifications for all apps. However, this can be tedious, as certain statements may be necessary. Another way is to set specific notifications to vibrate or sound instead of appearing on the screen. This way, we can still be alerted of important messages, but we can avoid having them visible on our screens.

7. Music

Music has long been known to impact people’s moods and focus positively. For example, a study in the Journal of Experimental Psychology found that people who listened to relaxing music while working reported fewer mistakes and improved focus and task performance.

The study participants were presented with a challenging memory task and were asked to make mistakes while listening to either calming or energizing music. Those who listened to the energizing music made more mistakes than those who listened to the calming music.

The study participants also reported feeling more energized after working with the energizing music. This suggests that music can improve task performance in several different ways. Music not only has a positive impact on mood, but it can also help you stay focused and productive.

8. Practice meditation

Meditation has been practised for centuries to achieve mental and physical well-being. It has been found to improve focus and concentration, increase creativity, and reduce stress. There are many different types of meditation, and mindfulness is the most effective for work.

Mindfulness meditation is the practice of continuously focusing on your present moment. It will help if you concentrate on your breath, thoughts, and sensations. It would help if you did this without judging them. For example, it would help if you focused on breathing in and out and nothing else. Do this for 20 minutes every day, and it can help improve your focus and concentration.

9. Don’t forget to take breaks

Taking breaks is essential for everyone, but it’s necessary for employees working long hours. When you take a break, your brain and body can rejuvenate. This allows you to return to work with a refreshed mind and body, which can lead to better results.

Aim to maximize your productivity; take at least 20 breaks daily. This can be a short break, such as a quick walk around the office or a lunch break. When you take a break, you’ll be able to return to work with a fresh perspective and be more efficient.

FAQ Ways to be Productive at Work in 2023

How can I set realistic work goals and stick to them? 

There are several things you should do to set realistic work goals and stick to them: 

1. Set attainable goals- Make sure your goal is realistic. If you set a plan that’s too big, it’s probably not going to be reached. Also, break your goal down into smaller goals. 

2. Track progress towards your goal – Make sure to check in with yourself regularly and track your progress. If you need to meet your goals, adjust them accordingly.

3. Reward yourself for successful work – It’s important to reward yourself for a job well done. This can be done in several ways, such as ordering take-out or going on a date with your significant other. Whatever you choose, make sure that it’s something you want and won’t feel guilty about later.

How can I create a productive work environment? 


Creating a productive work environment is very important. Your work environment can have a significant impact on your mood, your productivity, and your overall success.

Some of the most effective ways to make your work environment more productive are:

1. Make your surroundings comfortable. 

2. Use positive thinking and visualization techniques.

3. Get a good night’s sleep.

4. Use productivity tricks.

5. Learn how to manage distractions.

How to handle stress and anxiety while working? 


There are a few things that you can do to help manage stress and anxiety while working:

  1. Find a way to de-stress. This can be done by enjoying your hobbies or taking a break every once in a while.
  2. Find a way to work that is comfortable for you. Try working from home or switch to a more ergonomically-designed keyboard.
  3. Try to find a co-worker or supervisor who is supportive and understanding.

They can help you constructively deal with stress and anxiety


Managing your time effectively and setting realistic goals are part of staying productive at work. Once you’ve figured out what to do, it’s up to you to find time to work on it. Productivity at work is challenging, but it’s possible. If you need help staying motivated and focused, why not create a weekly schedule for yourself? I hope this has been helpful to you. 


Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken Meatballs Recipe

Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken Meatballs Recipe

Attention, party hosts: the finger food is here! Ground chicken meatballs are just different enough to make a nice change of pace from beef, and the buffalo sauce gives you the same classic flavor that you’d get from buffalo wings, only without all the mess!

Kids will love them, but they’re great for grown-ups too, especially for any kind of tailgate party or Game Day celebration.

Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken Meatballs

Meatballs can be a bit of a conundrum for Paleo beginners because the usual options for binders – bread crumbs or cornmeal – aren’t on the table. But here, an egg and some almond meal do the job just as well, minus the grains.

Buffalo meatballs clearly call for some Buffalo sauce: if you can’t find a Paleo-friendly version in a store, you can use the first recipe on this page (just ignore the drumsticks since you’ll be using the sauce on meatballs instead).

Some ranch dressing also works perfectly as a dip for the meatballs once they’re done; here’s a recipe for the homemade ranch. Chop up a few celery sticks to add to the tray, and you’ll have a quick and easy platter of snacks or appetizers any time you want them.

SERVES: 4 PREP: 15 min COOK: 2 h


  • 1 lb. ground chicken;
  • 1/3 cup almond meal;
  • 1 egg;
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced;
  • 3/4 cup buffalo sauce;
  • Homemade ranch dressing; (optional)
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper;
Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken Meatballs Recipe Preparation


  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. In a bowl, combine the ground chicken, almond meal, egg, garlic, and green onions, and season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Mix everything until well combined.
  4. Roll the mixture into a 1 1/2-inch meatball.
  5. Place the meatballs onto a baking sheet and bake for 5 minutes in the preheated oven.
  6. Turn off the oven and place the meatballs into a slow cooker. Add the buffalo sauce, and stir to combine.
  7. Cover and cook on low for 2 hours.
  8. (optional) Serve with ranch sauce for dipping.


Buffalo chicken without the mess of wings: perfect for younger kids, party trays, or just a quick snack to pull out of the fridge.

Keyword buffalo chicken, meatballs, slow cooker


  • lb. ground chicken
  • cup almond meal
  • egg
  • cloves garlic minced
  • green onions thinly sliced
  • cup buffalo sauce
  • Homemade ranch dressing optional
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


  • Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F.

  • In a bowl, combine the ground chicken, almond meal, egg, garlic, and green onions, and season with salt and pepper to taste.

    1 lb. ground chicken, 1/3 cup almond meal, 1 egg, 2 cloves garlic, 2 green onions, Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

  • Mix everything until well combined.

  • Roll the mixture into a 1 1/2-inch meatball.

  • Place the meatballs onto a baking sheet and bake for 5 minutes in the preheated oven.

  • Turn off the oven and place the meatballs into a slow cooker. Add the buffalo sauce, and stir to combine.

  • Cover and cook on low for 2 hours.

  • (optional) Serve with ranch sauce for dipping.


Calories: 237kcal | Carbohydrates: g | Protein: g | Fat: g | Saturated Fat: g | Polyunsaturated Fat: g | Monounsaturated Fat: g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 138mg | Sodium: mg | Potassium: 624mg | Fiber: g | Sugar: g | Vitamin A: 119IU | Vitamin C: mg | Calcium: mg | Iron: mg

This content was originally published here.

10 Self Care Activities for a Happier You

10 Self Care Activities for a Happier You

Whether you’re suffering from anxiety or depression or want to find ways to feel more positive about life when practicing self-care is a beautiful way to care for yourself. This blog post will look at ten self-care ideas to help you feel happy and relaxed and improve overall wellbeing. Let’s get started!

Stress is an inevitable part of modern life. From juggling work, family, and life’s daily responsibilities to dealing with financial worries and health issues, stress is an unavoidable part of life. But you don’t have to let your stress get the best of you. 

10 Self Care Activities to Help You De-Stress and Recharge Your Batteries



Stress can be draining and overwhelming, but it’s important to remember that you can take charge of your mental wellbeing when you practice self-care. Here are the top 10 free ways to help you eliminate stress.

1. Reduce Worrying


There are multiple benefits to reducing worrying. One of the most significant benefits is that it can help you focus on the tasks. As a result, you’re more productive and can quickly complete tasks when focused. However, worrying can also lead to negative emotions like anxiety and stress, which can interfere with your ability to think clearly.

Coping with worry can also help you alleviate stress and anxiety and make you feel better. When you’re stressed, you tend to avoid situations that provoke anxiety. But by facing your worries head-on, you can learn to manage and reduce them. Plus, worrying can lead to harmful habits like eating unhealthy foods or smoking. By changing your thinking, you can combat these negative behaviours.

Reducing worrying can also have a positive impact on your mood. When you’re in a good mood, dealing with difficult situations is more accessible. Your mood is also contagious, so if you’re in a good mood, your friends and family will also be in a good mood

2. Mindfulness Meditation 

Mindfulness meditation is a type of meditation that involves focusing on your breath and letting go of any thoughts that come into your head. Many people find that using essential oils during meditation has many benefits.
Organic essential oils can be diffused in the air or used directly on the skin. When diffused, they can help you to focus and promote relaxation. When applied to the skin, they can help to soothe and calm the nerves. Some benefits of using essential oils during meditation include increased focus, reduced anxiety, and improved sleep. Before diffusing or using any oils, always consult a therapist.

3. Deep Breathing 

Deep breathing is an essential self care ideas. When you breathe, you are taking in large amounts of oxygen. This improves your overall health since deep breathing can help to improve your respiratory system, heart, and brain. 

Deep breathing also helps to relieve stress and anxiety. When stressed, your body releases cortisol, which can cause several problems. Deep breathing can help to reduce the amount of cortisol that is released, which in turn can help to reduce the amount of stress that you experience.

4. Exercise 


Exercise has many benefits for your health. It can help improve your mood, cognitive function, heart health, and more. There are many types of training, and the most important thing is to find one that is comfortable for you.
Exercise has been linked with a decreased risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, obesity, and more. It can also help you lose weight, maintain weight, and improve overall health. Exercise can also reduce stress and improve your sleep quality. It’s essential to find a routine that you enjoy and stick to it. It will only be as effective if you want your exercise.

5. Eating Mindfully 


Eating mindfully is a practice that helps us eat in a satisfying, healthy, and enjoyable way. When you eat mindfully, you are paying attention to the food you are eating and the emotions that are associated with it.
Eating mindfully significantly reduces the number of calories that you consume. When you eat mindfully, you are more likely to choose healthy foods full of flavor. You are also more likely to avoid processed foods and unhealthy snacks. Mindful eating can also help you lose weight.

Eating mindfully can also improve your mood. Eating mindfully makes you more likely to feel satisfied and content. You’re also more likely to lose weight because you eat fewer calories. In addition, eating mindfully can reduce stress levels.

6. Listening to Music 


There are many benefits to listening to Music. Music has positively affected our emotions, cognitive function, and physical health. Here are just a few of the benefits of listening to Music: 

a. Music can reduce stress and anxiety.

b. Music has been shown to improve our moods and make us feel happier.

c. Music has been shown to improve our memory and cognitive function.

d. Music has been shown to improve our focus and concentration.

e. Music has been shown to improve our creativity and productivity.

7. Getting Enough Sleep 


Getting enough sleep is essential for your physical and mental health. It helps you stay alert and focused during the day, restores energy and revitalizes your body. Unfortunately, a lack of sleep can lead to several health problems, such as obesity and heart disease.

The average person needs at least seven hours of sleep per night. You may suffer from sleep deprivation if you’re getting less than that. You can measure how well you’re sleeping by taking a sleep survey. There are also several sleep apps that you can use to track your sleep and ensure that you’re getting the rest that you need.

8. Staying Calm


It can be challenging to remain calm in an emergency. However, by training yourself to stay calm in difficult situations, you can improve your chances of escaping unscathed. The first step is to recognize when you’re beginning to get overwhelmed. Then, take a few deep breaths to calm down. You can also use essential oils for relaxation.

Once you’re more relaxed, think about what you need to do to stay safe. 

Some things to keep in mind when staying calm during an emergency are to remain aware of your surroundings, keep your voice low, and avoid making noise. When dealing with an emergency, staying calm and planning are essential.

9. Taking A Vacation 


Taking a vacation can have a lot of benefits for your mental and physical health. The mental benefits of a break include a decrease in stress, an increase in creativity, and a decrease in anxiety. The physical benefits of vacation include an increase in endorphins, blood flow, and a reduction in heart rate.

10. Being Grateful


Gratitude is a powerful state of mind that has been shown to increase happiness, positive outlook, and resilience in the face of stress. In addition, being grateful has been linked to lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, reduced risk of heart disease, and even longer life.

Being grateful also has a ripple effect. When you are thankful, you are more likely to share your blessings with others. You are more likely to be helpful, supportive, and understanding. You are more likely to find joy in your life and to be more compassionate.

Gratitude makes us happier because it reduces stress. When stressed, our brains release cortisol, which negatively affects our mood and leads to cravings for unhealthy foods. Gratitude is a powerful antidote to cortisol.

So, if you want to be happier, be more grateful. It’s that simple.


We live in a busy world. Sometimes, we need something to enjoy ourselves, a way to relax, and something that will help us find peace. Self-care activities can be that help. Whether spending time in nature, reading a book, or finding a hobby, self-care activities can allow us to enjoy our lives. And self-care doesn’t have to mean a spa day or a weekend away. Self-care can be as simple as taking some time for ourselves. This article has helped you think about which self-care activities you enjoy and which can help you feel more positive about life. Tell me in the comments which type of self-care activity you decided on and how it’s working out for you!